India's indigenously designed and developed long range subsonic cruise missile ‘Nirbhay’ performed its fifth experimental test from a test range at Chandipur along the Odisha coast today.
The state-of-the-art sleek cruise missile, which can carry warheads of up to 300 kg, took off from a specially designed launcher from the launch complex-3 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur, near here, at about 11.20 AM, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) sources told PTI.
All initial critical operations of the trial such as blast of the sophisticated missile are successful as it moved up in its trajectory, a DRDO scientist said soon after the launch of the missile.
The data is being retrieved from tracking systems for a detailed assessment, source said. Out of four earlier trials since its maiden launch in 2013, only one was successful.
According to DRDO Facebook post, the flight test achieved all the mission objectives completely from lift-off till the final splash, boosting the confidence of all scientists associated with the trial.
"The missile took-off in the programmed manner and all critical operations viz. launch phase, booster deployment, engine start, wing deployment and other operational parameters demonstrated through autonomous way point navigation. The guidance, control and navigation system of the missile is configured around the indigenously designed Ring Laser Gyroscope (RLG) and MEMS based Inertial Navigation System (INS) along with GPS system. The missile majestically cruised for a total time duration of 50 minutes, achieving the range of 647 km. The missile was tracked with the help of ground based radars and other parameters were monitored by indigenous telemetry stations developed by DRDO," the post said.
Powered by a solid rocket motor booster developed by the Advanced Systems Laboratory (ASL), the missile has an operational range of 1000 km.
Nirbhay' missile can travel with a turbofan or turbojet engine and is guided by a highly advanced inertial navigation system indigenously developed by the Research Centre Imarat (RCI), the DRDO sources said.
The two-stage missile is 6 metre long, 0.52 metre wide with a wing span of 2.7 metre. It can carry a warhead of 200 kg to 300 kg at a speed of 0.6 to 0.7 Mach. Its launch weight is about 1500 kg.